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Rowan Atkinson has learned one expensive lesson. The actor, best known for playing the loveable, mumbling Mr. Bean, crashed his McLarenF1 in while plying the cobblestoned paths of his British homeland in 2011.

The single-car accident left the English actor with a badly injured shoulder and an even more badly damaged supercar. The damage to the carbon fiber car combined with its rarity meant that Atkinson had to wait close to a month just for his insurance company to give him an accurate estimate. Talking about the reason getting these supercars repaired is so costly and time-consuming, Ben Stagg, specialty insurer with RK Harrison, said “All modern supercars are predominantly carbon fiber — most Lamborghinis, most Ferraris — and the smallest ding in carbon fiber is a big repair job… And part of the engine bay is gold, that’s the best heat conductor. It’s the materials they used compared to everyday cars that make it so expensive.”

Atkinson is more than a collector of prime cars. He actually uses them to get from over here to over there. “It depresses me when great cars are hidden away. It’s a crime not to use it,” he said.

Classic & Sports Car magazine editor Alastair Clements applauds Atkinson for his stance. “[He wants people] to know that he loves [his McLaren], that he isn’t just some celebrity with an expensive car, that he’s owned it for 15 years and loved it for 15 years. He’s put it back exactly as it was. He’s a bit of a hero. It’s much more than the value.”

How about you? Do you take your supercar to the grocery store or the cleaners?


About the author: Andrew Greene


Now playing the role of grumpy old man in the foothills of Northern California’s Gold Country, Andrew has had a life-long love affair with vehicles of all sorts, from the bicycle he pedaled across the continent in 1991 to the armored personnel carriers he drove in the Army to the bamboo rafts, elephants, motorcycle taxis, ferries and buses he traveled by during the 13 years he lived and worked in South East Asia. Always eager to learn more about how the people of the world get from here to there in their day-today lives, he, a professional journalist, has been covering the vehicle industry for years.


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